A Day Like This

In my recent trip I spent only nine days visiting Marin CA – mainly in Novato and Tiburon. After twenty-nine years, Tiburon had changed a lot, though the shortest Main Street and Ark Row are much prettier now. This few minutes video was put together from some short clips I managed to take, it did not turn out too badly so I am happy to share it with you and hope you’ll give this old grandma a thumb-up.

Visiting a beach in Point Reyes National Park was particularly nice. Watching the waves rolling in, crashing on soft sandy beach, beneath the piercing sunlight the sea sparkled like thousands pieces of brilliant cut diamonds.

The white fog blanketing the bay quietly slipping across the Golden Gate Bridge was always a fascinating sight to watch. We used to be able to see it from our balcony listening to the sound of the foghorn.

Don’t ask me why I use “that song” for the background music. Normally, I would prefer something more classical, but somehow this crazy song seemed more appealing to me at this time:

Words based on a song from The Seldom Seen Kid

” Drinking in the morning sun, blinking in the morning sun. Shaking off the heavy one…

…I can only think it must be love, and it’s looking like a beautiful day… Kiss me when my lips are thin…

…Holy cow! I loved your eyes, and only just now I saw you lying with me half awake… And it’s looking like a beautiful day…”  

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Roaming After The Rain

My photographs are just amateur snapshots with a Sony Handycam that is old fashion and a little heavy to hold, which the younger generation found amusing seeing me carrying it everywhere I go during my recent journeys. My photos have nothing to do with professional photography, they represented what inspired me but only just a fragment of my imagination…

Photo by Thai PeckBetween the rain and the sun appearing a cute and fluffy teddy bear walking on the horizon.Photo by Thai PeckPhoto by Thai PeckAn early evening took us through the wetland, walking through the tall reefs we could hear birds chirping and the hoarse croaking from the frog “prince” looking for a princess perhaps? We didn’t stop to investigate.Photo by Thai Peck

At a creek full of water from the heavy rain of the morning, trying not to get our shoes wet, we attentively stepping on the man-made wooden planks crossing to the other side (looked just like a scene that was in my dream). Somehow the early evening light of late spring provided a lovely warm tone to the landscape fresh with many green shades.Photo by Thai Peck

My friend helped me to go first carrying my camera so I could turn and took a photo of her walking the planks. Thank goodness! Despite all the giggles and the trembling of the sprained knee, I didn’t fall in.Photo by Thai Peck

Photo by Thai PeckOn the other side of the creek and along the wet marsh, we spotted a swan family: Mum, dad and the three kids happily played among the tall grass, such a peaceful scene that captured my heart, I carried the image with me walking back home to prepare my wholesome dinner alone.Photo by Thai Peck

A Trace Of Memory

“There is a pleasure in the pathless woods,

There is a rupture in the lonely shore,

There is a society where more intrudes,

By the deep sea, and the music in its roar,

I love not Man the less, but Nature more…”Photo by Thai PeckA Quick sketch from memory to remember a beach at Point Reyes.

Missed The Moon

The moon above the cloud over Seattle
The moon above the cloud over Seattle

Super moon came and went for three days now and I still haven’t been able to have a glimpse of it. Not because I did not look, but the sky over Fremont clouded so thick every night with constant rain. There were sunny patches but only during the day when gusty winds occasionally managed to chase the clouds away.Photo by Thai Peck

Wandering through the rose garden by the Seattle zoo where autumn is making room to welcome winter as the leaves turning from yellow-red to brown while the trees looking bare and shivering. Scattering around were some lonely flowers desperately hung on to thorny branches knowing soon enough they too will fade and die.Photo by Thai Peck

But fear not, when spring follows winter, the next generation of roses will assuredly bloom much more beautiful as I watched a team of gardeners hard at work nurturing them with definite care if not tender and loving.Photo by Thai PeckPhoto by Thai Peck

And I remembered on this spot where I sat, in the brilliant summer sun of last year. The roses may have been so much prettier though I saw none but pain and grief through tears…Photo by Thai Peck

The garden in summer 2015
The garden in summer 2015

Suddenly the sun moved behind the cloud, casting a more sombre shade and I thought I felt some tiny drops… is that rain?

Foodie Journey

Photo by Thai PeckIt is heaven travelling to places where one could drink in the beauty of the scenery while enjoying the local cuisine. Here are some good eating during my journey, mostly in Marin County on this trip.

A soup made with potato and seafood by Sandy, Novato.Photo by Thai Peck

A little pumpkin pie for dessert at de Young museum café.Photo by Thai Peck

Tomales Bay, InvernessPhoto by Thai PeckSmoked California cod and short rib tacos found at Fog’s KitchenPhoto by Thai PeckPhoto by Thai PeckPerfectly grilled salmon, Brussels sprouts in saffron beurre blanc.Photo by Thai Peck

At Bistro Aix, San FranciscoPhoto by Thai PeckBaby artichokes, dandelion, satsuma, manchego & olive oil.Photo by Thai PeckFresh and wholesome food aplenty in Marin CountyPhoto by Thai PeckPhoto by Thai PeckPhoto by Thai PeckPhoto by Thai Peck

Willi’s Seafood in HealdsburgPhoto by Thai PeckPhoto by Thai Peck

Photo by Thai Peck

Main Street in Tiburon then
Main Street in Tiburon then
Main Street, Tiburon, and Now
Main Street, Tiburon. “Now”

Servino restaurant, Main Street, TiburonPhoto by Thai Peck

Zuppa di PesciePhoto by Thai Peck

 

And

Downtown, SausalitoPhoto by Thai PeckPhoto by Thai Peck

Poggio restaurantPhoto by Thai Peck

Fregola: mussels, clams, rock shrimps, bay scallops, fine herbs.Photo by Thai Peck

In Seattle

At Rock Creek restaurant, FremontPhoto by source

Casco Bay monkfish, Thai five spice broth, cipollini onions, maitake mushrooms, cilantro, crispy shallots.Photo by Thai PeckBraised Oregon Lamb Sugo, strozzapreti pasta, roasted tomatoes, red wine, roasted walnut, lemon, parsley.Photo by Thai Peck

…And The Fog Lifted!

Photo by Thai Peck“And the light of fog, blanketing the hills,
drifting in at night through the Golden Gate,
to lie on the city at dawn.”Photo by Thai Peck

During my short stay in San Francisco I only had one day and one chance for an attempt to take a few snapshots of the Golden Gate bridge.Photo by Thai PeckPhoto by Thai PeckPhoto by Thai Peck

Driving into the city from Marin, I was reminded of the fog that rolling in after sunset, slipping through the Golden Gate bridge and invading the bay divided Marin county and the city of San Francisco. It could be a lovely, sunny and warm day in Tiburon but if we had to go to the city, my husband used to remind me: “Take something warm…” as it could be very cold and damp with a sort of misty spray San Franciscans called: “That’s not rain!”Photo by Thai Peck

Photo by Thai PeckWe used to hear the fog horn sounding from the ferry while the sun was shining strong in Tiburon. We looked out to the bay and saw a thick blanket of white cloud across the bay, the fog was so thick that the city skyline seemed to disappear all together.Photo by Thai Peck

Photo by Thai PeckBut eventually the fog did lift and we did end up having a beautiful sunny afternoon by the bay and the marina.Photo by Thai Peck

“…The air is chill, and the day grows late,
And the clouds come in through the Golden Gate,
Freighted with sorrow, heavy with woe; 
But these shapes that cluster, dark and low.
To-morrow shall be all aglow!
In the blaze of the coming morn these mists,
Whose weight my heart in vain resists…”

by Edward Pollock Photo by Thai Peck

Tiburón = Shark

tiburondowntown

Photo by Thai PeckAcross the bay the fog has lifted. Here in Tiburon I wandered, from the water edge through main street and round back along the lagoon Belvedere.

Main Street, Tiburon
Main Street, Tiburon

Photo by Thai Peck

Passed the tennis courts to the right I turned and climbed up the hill on Owlswood Lane, at the bend I stopped to catch my breath, a few feet away the familiar driveway and there stood the house where we used to live more than thirty years ago, number 953…Photo by Thai Peck

Clicked the camera for a few quick shots, afraid someone may come out and send me off. (Tiburon these days, a community with high security, the police camera would take a photo of your car as you drove into town). So down the hill I walked away, listening to my heart beating at fast rate.Photo by Thai PeckPhoto by Thai Peck

So much memories of our few years living here that are now coming back so vividly in my mind, even though Tiburon has changed so much but I still love it the same. Here I met my dear friend Sandy on the tennis court of all places, and for the last thirty years we have kept our friendship through communication between distant shores half a world away.Photo by Thai PeckPhoto by Thai Peck

And now I am sitting at the same spot in the same early evening light on a warm autumn day, waiting for the same ferry to dock. The only thing different is that I don’t see my husband get off the boat…Photo by Thai PeckPhoto by Thai Peck

The sun is setting. Darkens the shadows, Tiburon glows, and golden light sweeping across the hillside.Photo by Thai PeckPhoto by Thai PeckPhoto by Thai PeckPhoto by Thai Peck

Marin MOCA

To be in the US during the last few weeks of the presidential election campaign leading to voting day has been quite an interesting time for me, to listen and reading a varieties of viewpoints across Seattle and San Francisco. Somehow, it was not that much different from our Australian general election, it’s even similar in a way regarding the political candidates. And as with many Australians and so the government, we’re anxiously waiting for the result. But in the meantime I hope you enjoy walking through this exhibition with me.

Photo by Thai PeckHamilton Air force Base was established in 1920s, built in the Great Depression and named after WWI pilot and hero Lloyd Hamilton. It was originally designed as a bomber installation and became a fighter base in 1940.Photo by Thai Peck

In 1933 the base was built via contract awarded, departing from traditional design the buildings were rendered in the Spanish Revival style was then popular in California. Reinforced concrete walls were covered in stucco to appear similar to earlier California missions; mission tile roofs topped the buildings.

After the air base ceased all operation in 1970s, many of the facilities at the airfield have been reclaimed by the city of Novato and county of Marin for public use, including “Marin Moca”.Photo by Thai Peck

The Marin Museum of Contemporary Art is housed in the beautiful mission styled right in the center of the triangle formed by streets lined with palm trees. It is a non-collecting museum and has over 40 artists working in studios on the site. Marin MOCA has a main gallery as well as the lobby gallery, a museum store, a classroom, and artist studios.

Donna Solin
Donna Solin, artist in her studio.
Luis E. Garcia
Luis E. Garcia, resident artist and his work
Work by Kathleen Taylor
Work by Kathleen Taylor

Visiting this artist community was just my “cup of tea”, I felt very much at home and it was such a delight to have had the opportunity talking with some artists, looked at their artwork and learnt their wisdom. Thanks to my friend Sandy for being so thoughtful in bringing me here.Photo by Thai Peck

James Sansing
“Tension” by James Sansing

Work created from typewriter parts, trees, glass wood, bricks cut from standard bricks, toy tires, strings.

"Untitle" by Demetra Theofanous
“Untitle” by Demetra Theofanous

This object made out of glass, looks amazing!

"Hush" by Evany Zirul
“Hush” by Evany Zirul

Sculptured from welded steel coat hangers and copper mesh.

"Mission TX" by Serena Pandos
“Mission TX”
by Serena Pandos

Golden Buckle. Acrylic gouache on Arches 300 lbs paper.

"The still one" by Jordan Hayes
“The Still One”
by Jordan Hayes

Medium: Oil on skateboard deck.

Point Reyes

Photo by Thai PeckA poem by Gary Snyder

“Sandpipers at the margin in the moon,

Bright fan of the flat creek,

On dark sea sand, rock boom beyond,

The work of centuries and wars, a car

Is parked a mile above where the dirt road ends;

In naked gritty sand,

Eye-stinging salty driftwood campfire smoke, out far

It all begins again.

sandpipers chasing the shiny surf in the moonlight,

By the fire at the beach.”Photo by Thai Peck

Limantour beach in Point Reyes National Park is a beautiful place. The pathway leading to the beach was adorned with tall native grass and flowering shrubs. As you climbed slowly to the top of the sand dune, the sea appeared sparkling under the midday sun. Though it might be a fresh chill brought in by the sea breeze, warm sand soon provided the comfort as you started to walk. Along the seashore pelicans and little sandpipers fishing for their fill, in harmony and at times in frenzy flight…Photo by Thai PeckPhoto by Thai PeckPhoto by Thai PeckPhoto by Thai Peck

On this foreign shore you once set foot, and here again on your footsteps I wandered and thought you were by my side.Photo by Thai PeckPhoto by Thai PeckAnd how I wish you were!

Worth A Visit: De Young

“An Homage to French winemaking this vase is an allegory of the annual wine making in the shape of a colossal wine vessel decorated with figures associated with the rites of Bacchus.”

"Poème de la Vigne" by Paul Gustave Doré
“Poème de la Vigne”
by Paul Gustave Doré

De Young Museum in Golden Gate Park, San Francisco is a place worth a visit and spend a few hours to contemplate the most beautiful artwork from all over the world. The entire exterior is clad in copper and the twisting tall tower of 44m is an amazing feature.Photo by Thai Peck

Main entrance
Main entrance

Photo by Thai Peck

Kane Kwei (Ghana)
Kane Kwei (Ghana) a coffin was made with wood, paint and cloth in the shape of a cocoa pod

Kane Kwei was once an apprentice to a carpenter making coffins. When his uncle, a fisherman, asked him for a special coffin, the artist created one in the shape of a boat. Soon orders were placed with Kwei for other representational coffins, the cocoa pod was a popular form in Ghana.

Nineteenth century cloth, Sumatra, Indonesia
Nineteenth century cloth, Sumatra, Indonesia

“Lawon” a married woman shoulder wrap made in silk, stitch-resist dyeing (tritik).

Georgia O'Keeffe (1887-1986)
Georgia O’Keeffe (1887-1986)

“Petunia” oil on hardboard panel.

USA, ca 1960
USA, ca 1960 (Cotton; double-weave)

Dictated by the loom, woven structures fundamentally exist on grid, their patterns plotted according to mathematical systems. A mid-twentieth-century American coverlet, made during the heyday of Op Art